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Father's Day Weekend: Finding Gratitude in the Heaviness

Updated: Jan 19

widowhood and solo-parenting When Mike was sick, we’d talk about why the universe allowed us to create such a beautiful family to then rip it apart. I’ll never have that answer and I don’t like to feel sorry for myself but this weekend, of all weekends, it's feeling a little extra unfair.

daddy and his boys

I’m entering this weekend with a heavy but grateful heart.

Heavy, because the man I created my children with is not here on earth to be celebrated.

Heavy, because we can’t make pancakes and surprise him with breakfast in bed.

Heavy, because to visit daddy is to visit “daddy’s bench” at the cemetery.

Heavy, because I took the boys to get cards for their grandfathers, while trying to redirect them away from the "dad" cards that took up 90% of the aisle.

Heavy, because I know their pain will only worsen as they grow and become more aware of the magnitude of their loss.

Heavy, because I know the pain of living without a parent as an adult so I can’t even imagine it as a child.

Heavy, because Dominic really only knows daddy through pictures now.

Heavy, because he’ll never hold my hand as I give birth again.

Heavy, because he’ll never cut another cord and I’ll never get to watch him light up in another delivery room.

Part of me wants to ignore the holiday all together but another part of me wants to shout about him from every rooftop. He's not here but he'll never stop being their father and I want the world to know that he was a natural. That he was loving, caring, doting, and proud. Strong, patient, soft, and gentle. Funny, smart, silly and present.

And I'm grateful.

Grateful, because I had a front row seat to Mike's fatherhood journey and that....that was the best show ever.

Grateful, because we have so many strong male role models in our lives.

Grateful, because I had the honor of having his children.

Grateful, because it was his hand that I held as I gave birth.

Grateful, because it was me that watched him light up in the delivery room.

Grateful, because I get to see so much of Mike through our boys every day.

Grateful, because I still have my dad here to celebrate – and celebration is so deserved because he has helped me in every way possible over the last two years – from giving me life advice to taking care of my babies to simply taking out my trash. He’s lessened the burden of caregiving and solo-parenting in so many ways.

Grateful, that I still have my father-in-law to celebrate, who offers us a connection to Mike that no one else possibly can.

and great pop-pop of course!

Grateful, for having the opportunity to spend time with my brothers this weekend. They're wonderful fathers and great support for the boys.

Grateful, for a man who showed up unexpectedly when I was at my worst and continues to enthusiastically and unconditionally show up for us every day, all while being an amazing daddy to his own kiddos.

So a special shout out to the dads, the solo parents who play two roles, the pops, the pop pops, the bonus parents, the kids who’ve lost a daddy and the daddies who’ve lost a child. And to whoever else I’ve missed.

I see you. And this weekend ain’t easy....

But we'll get through it.

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